Sri Lanka wins with record-breaking Mendis bowling

DHAKA, January 12, 2009 (AFP) – Ajantha Mendis became the fastest bowler to complete 50 wickets in one-day internationals as Sri Lanka crushed Zimbabwe by 130 runs in a triangular series match here Monday. The unorthodox spinner finished with 3-15 off 5.2 disciplined overs as Sri Lanka dismissed Zimbabwe for a paltry 80 after scoring 210-6.

Mendis, playing his 19th one-day international, broke Indian fast bowler Ajit Agarkar’s record of 50 wickets in 23 matches.

Extras were the highest contributor in a dismal Zimbabwean batting performance with 16. Stuart Matsikenyeri (15) was the lone batsman to reach double-figures.

It was Zimbabwe’s fourth-lowest total against Sri Lanka in 43 one-day internationals.

Fast bowler Nuwan Kulasekara set up the victory when he grabbed three wickets in his lively opening spell to send Zimbabwe reeling at 27-3 before Mendis and off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan (2-4) completed the job.

Mendis, who was two wickets short of the record before this game, removed Matsikenyeri and Raymond Price before finishing the match with the dismissal of last-man Tawanda Mupariwa.

Man-of-the-match Angelo Mathews earlier cracked an unbeaten 52 for his maide